locals on a pedestrian pilgrimage to Wrigley Field for a Cubs game. The area is
flush with restaurants, and public transportation via the El or buses is a snap.
The Belden-Stratford This north-side hotel is a great option for
families who want to do as the natives do in a neighborhood atmosphere. Actu-
ally a condominium building that offers 25 hotel rooms, the two-story lobby
feels grandly European, and paneled entry doors lead the way to airy rooms with
9-foot-high ceilings, crown molding, and plush carpeting. Rooms are large, the
doorman greets you as if you were a resident, and Lincoln Park, where kids can
run free, is across the street. You are right across from the Lincoln Park Zoo and
the Conservatory, and steps from the lake and buses that will take you down-
town in a matter of minutes.
Be sure to ask for a room with a park view, so you can watch runners pass and
couples stroll. (Some rooms feature wraparound views with south, west, and east
exposures.) Even though it's a condominium building, there's maid and valet
service and a rooftop sun deck. One downside: Because the Belden-Stratford is
not a full-service hotel, there's no room service or concierge.
2300 N. Lincoln Park W., Chicago, IL 60614. & 800/800-6261 or 773/281-2900. Fax 773/880-2039. www.
beldenstratford.com. 25 units. $209-$299 double. Kids under 18 stay free in parent's room. Rollaways
$20/night; cribs free. AE, DC, DISC, MC, V. Valet parking $25 with in/out privileges. Subway/El: Red Line to
Fullerton. Amenities: Fitness center; spa; salon; coin-op laundry. In room: A/C, TV; hair dryer and iron upon
Best Western Hawthorne Terrace Hotel A fantastic bargain for
families who don't mind staying a bit north of the beaten track, this hotel offers
plenty of space for a great price. The Hawthorne Terrace, located near Wrigley
Field on the Near North side, was remodeled 5 years ago. The junior suites pro-
vide a room with two double beds, and an adjoining living room with a pullout
couch; families of four will fit comfortably in one of these suites, which can also
accommodate a crib. Amazingly, for the price, you also have access to a fitness cen-
ter with a sauna and Jacuzzi. (Young children should be supervised by an adult.)
A continental breakfast is offered in the lobby every morning. Best of all? Parking
is a bargain at $16 a day—about half the going rate of most downtown hotels.
3434 N. Broadway, Chicago, IL 60657. & 888/675-2378 or 773/244-3434. Fax 773/244-3435. www.best
western.com. 59 units. $175 double; $185 suite. Kids 12 and under stay free in parent's room. Rollaways free
(sofa beds provided in junior suites); cribs free. AE, DC, DISC, MC, V. Parking $16 in nearby lot with in/out priv-
ileges. Subway/El: Red Line to Belmont. Amenities: Exercise room; laundry service and laundry room.
Inroom: A/C, TV, fridge, coffeemaker, hair dryer, iron.
Windy City Urban Inn Children over the age of 10 are welcome at
this grand 1886 home, located on a tranquil side street just blocks away from
busy Clark Street and Lincoln Avenue—both chock-full of shops, restaurants,
and bars. The inn is charming enough, but the true selling point of the Windy
City Inn is hosts Andy and Mary Shaw. He's a well-known political reporter, and
she has 20 years of experience in the Chicago bed-and-breakfast business.
Together, they are excellent resources for anyone who wants to get beyond the
usual tourist sites. Subtle Chicago touches give guests a distinctive experience:
Blues and jazz play during the buffet breakfast, and local food favorites offered
to guests include the famous cinnamon buns from Ann Sather's restaurant and
beer from Goose Island Brewery.